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Past Recipients

2012 Alumni Award Recipients

Alumni Service Award

Mr. Mark E Hooper

Professionally, Mark Hooper has practiced public accounting for 36 years; 17 as a partner with the international firm of Ernst & Young and now as a founding member of Andrews Hooper Pavlik PLC, a regional CPA firm with offices in Okemos, Grand Rapids, Saginaw, Bay City, Midland and Auburn Hills. His professional experience is broad, ranging from estate and individual tax planning to advanced tax matters for businesses and publicly traded corporations. Hooper serves on the board of directors of the Auto Owners Insurance Group and as board member and treasurer of the Capital Community Angels, Inc. Hooper's volunteer experience includes service as board chair or president of the Capital Region Community Foundation, Ele's Place, the Haslett-Okemos Rotary Club, the Rotary Club of Lansing, the Rotary Club of Lansing Foundation, the advisory boards for Wharton Center and the Department of Accounting and Information Systems, and the Broad College of Business Alumni Board at Michigan State University. Additionally, he has served as board member or treasurer on numerous other communityorganizations' boards or volunteer committees. Hooper was paid a special tribute at the 2010 Entrepreneurial Awardsof Greater Lansing for serving as chairman of the judging panel since the program's inception in 1994. He was recognized with the Founders Business Advocate award for his continued commitment.

Mr. James L Tuman

Jim Tuman's mission to give young people a voice in their own lives grew out of the time he spent at Michigan State. As a national youth speaker, he has presented to over two million students in more than 2,000 schools in every state and eleven foreign countries. His topicsinclude teen suicide prevention, bullying, teen violence prevention, substance abuse and creating a positive school environment. Through his passion, Tuman has altered lives and become a catalyst for young people, helping to change their paths of darkness to light. Along the way, his work has been featured on the national news shows of ABC, NBC and CBS, The Today Show and The Oprah Winfrey Show, as well as in News Week, USA Today, Chicago Sun Times, Washington Post, L.A. Times, Detroit Free Press, The Detroit News and the New York Times. Named The Detroit News Michigander of the Year, he has also received awards from 17 states for his youth work. In 1989, Tuman founded 'Jimmy's Kids' for 15 special needs kids in a project school in Detroit. Today the program serves 27,000 children with more than 2,000 volunteers in more than 100 cities in four states. 'Jimmy's Kids' and other programs he founded have contributed to his reputation as a benevolent and inspiring leader.

Distinguished Alumni Award

Dr. Warrick Livingston Carter Ph.D.

Music Dr. Warrick L. Carter has served as president of Columbia College Chicago, the nation's largest arts and communication college, since 2000. Prior to joining Columbia, Carter was the director of Entertainment Arts for Walt Disney Entertainment where he was responsible for developing global education and live arts programs for the entire corporation. Carter also served as dean of faculty and then as provost/vice president of academic affairs during his tenure at Berklee College of Music. His teaching experience includes appointments at Governors State University, University of Maryland Eastern Shore and Northwestern University. Carter's musical talents have enriched the lives of countless individuals. As a composer and performer Carter has created works for the National Endowment for the Arts, the Chicago Symphony Orchestra Association and the Chicago Chamber Orchestra, has recorded on the Mark and Capital labels, and performed in concert and at festivals worldwide. He serves on the advisory boards of numerous civic, educational, and professional organizations including Interlochen, International House of Blues Foundation, Rotary International and the Lincoln Library. Carter was inducted into the International Jazz Educators Hall of Fame. He has also received the National Black Caucus Achievement Award and the Chicago United Business Leaders of Color Award. Carter holds an MMus and a PhD in music education from Michigan State University and is known as a true Spartan by anyone who comes in contact with him.

Mr. William A Demmer

Engineering The Demmer Family: John Demmer and his late wife Marnie; son Bill Demmer, BS '70, and his wife Linda; son Ed Demmer and his wife Laura; and daughter Marguerite (Peg Demmer) Breuer, BA '73, and her husband Bradford. The family has collectively made a gift to name the Demmer Family Hall of History in the Skandalaris Football Center. Over their lifetime, John and Marnie have supported the Mildred B. Erickson Scholarship, the SAE Formula Car Racing, intercollegiate athletics, broadcasting services, and the John and Marnie Demmer Shooting, Sports, Education and Training Center. Bill and Linda have pledged to name a gallery in the Eli and Edythe Broad Art Museum. Ed and Laura have made a gift to name the Head Coach's Office in the Duffy Daugherty Building expansion.

Dr. Bonnie J. Knutson Ph.D.

Human Ecology Bonnie J. Knutson, PhD, describes herself as a people watcher. Widely known as an authority on emerging lifestyle trends, the customer experience, brand positioning and creative marketing strategies, she works with organizations that want to understand and take advantage of changing consumer demands. Knutson is a professor in The School of Hospitality Business at Michigan State University.Her work has been featured in publications such as The Wall Street Journal, USA Today, as well as on CNN and NPR. She has also authored M3: Membership Marketing in the Millennium and is editor emeritus of the Journal of Hospitality and Leisure Marketing. With her wit and entertaining style, Knutson is a frequent speaker at seminars, workshops, and industry meetings in both the United States and abroad, including those of the American Marketing Association, the National Restaurant Association Show and the New York Hotel Show. Knutson was the recipient of the MSU Distinguished Faculty Award. She was also awarded the esteemed Withrow Award for teaching and research in the Broad College of Business and has won the prestigious Golden Key Teaching Excellence Award for outstanding instruction and dedication to students. The Advertising Education Foundation also named Knutson a National Scholar. Knutson is a past president of the Advisory Council for the Wharton Center for Performing Arts and the Michigan State University Alumni Association National Board, and continues to serve on both. She also serves on the board of the Greater Lansing Convention & Visitors' Bureau Foundation.

Mr. Albert B Ratner

CANR Albert Ratner graduated from Michigan State University with a B.S. in Forestry in 1951. He has since received an honorary Doctor of Law degree from Long Island University and an honorary Doctor of Engineering degree from Polytechnic University. Ratner currently resides in his hometown of Cleveland, Ohio, where he is known as a community leader. He is a life trustee of the Cleveland Jewish Community Federation and a member of the International Council of the American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee. Ratner is co-chairman emeritus of the board of Forest City Enterprises, which is a commercial and residential real estate entity that he has been a part of since 1951. In the company's hometown of Cleveland, Ratner was the driving force behind a dramatic redevelopment of the Terminal Tower and the former Union Terminal into Tower City Center, which became a mixed-use complex with a multi-floor mall, office space and hotel. The project, which was completed in 1990, is widely regarded as the catalyst for the rebirth of downtown Cleveland throughout the 1990s. Nationally, Ratner is on the board of governors of the Henry M. Jackson Foundation and is an honorary trustee of the Enterprise Foundation. Ratner still maintains his Spartan roots as an adjunct visiting professor for the MSU Land Policy Institute.

Mr. Yuzo Yagi

Business Yuzo Yagi is the president, chairman and chief executive officer of Yagi Tsusho Limited in Japan, and its international group of companies operating in the United States, Europe and Asia. Under Yagi's care, the company has grown to become one of the world's largest import/export companies in the area of fashion goods. Today, the company and its holdings represent a complete value chain from factory to global distribution and retail outlets. Yagi is also well-known for angel investment and for support of the arts, architecture and cultural exchange. He has given substantial gifts to the MSU Study Abroad programs and has made it possible for many students, not only business undergraduates, to take part in overseas study in Japan and elsewhere. Yagi has received prestigious honors from the governments of Italy, France and the United Kingdom. In June 2011, he was appointed as an honorary officer of the British Empire by Queen Elizabeth in recognition of his contributions to business relations between the United Kingdom and Japan. Yagi earned his bachelor's degree in Economics from Konan University in 1964 and his MBA in Marketing from Michigan State in 1967. Nowhere is his influence as a Spartan more evident than in his home country of Japan. There, he is an active supporter of the Tokyo MSU Alumni Club and the originator of the Kansai/Osaka MSU Alumni Club. Since its inception, Yagi has been the driving force and primary supporter of the Kansai Club, in both tangible and intangible ways.

Philanthropist Award

Mr. Eli Broad

Eli H. Broad, Los Angeles, chairman of the board of SunAmerica Inc., one of the nation's largest issuers of fixed and variable annuities and guaranteed investment contracts, who received his bachelor's degree in 1954. Broad co-founded Kaufman and Broad in 1957 and built it into one of the nation's leading homebuilders. Later he developed SunAmerica into one of the nation's most successful retirement savings businesses. Under Broad's leadership, SunAmerica was the best performing stock on the New York Stock Exchange from 1990 until 1998, when Broad negotiated its acquisition by AIG. He is also a board member of American International Group Inc., a leading U.S.-based international insurance and financial services company. An avid supporter of higher education, Broad and his wife, Edythe, endowed The Eli Broad College of Business and The Eli Broad Graduate School of Management at MSU in 1991, and recently established a special endowment for The Eli and Edythe L. Broad Dean of Business. A leader in Los Angeles civic activities, Broad has supported a wide array of causes, including service as founding chairman of the Museum of Contemporary Art in Los Angeles and as a trustee of the Los Angeles County Museum of Art.

Mrs. Edythe Broad

Eli and Edythe Broad have deep roots in Michigan. Both attended Detroit Public Schools, and Eli Broad graduated cum laude in 1954 with a degree in accounting from Michigan State University, becoming the youngest C.P.A. in the state's history. Eli Broad went on to found two Fortune 500 companies, KB Home (formerly Kaufman and Broad Home Corporation) and SunAmerica, Inc. His success across a five-decade career in business enabled the couple to become two of the country's leading philanthropists. They established The Broad Foundations to advance entrepreneurship for the public good in education, science and the arts. Since 1970, the Broads have built two of the most prominent collections of postwar and contemporary art worldwide including 2,000 works by more than 200 artists. Since 1984, The Broad Art Foundation has operated an active 'lending library' dedicated to increasing access to contemporary art for audiences worldwide in hundreds of museums and university galleries. Mr. Broad was the founding chairman and is a life trustee of The Museum of Contemporary Art in the couple's adopted hometown of Los Angeles. He is also a life trustee of The Museum of Modern Art in New York and of the Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA). The Broads have made leadership gifts to build a Zaha Hadid-designed building at MSU and also the Renzo Piano-designed Broad Contemporary Art Museum at LACMA. After years of supporting other arts institutions, they are currently building The Broad, a museum and headquarters for The Broad Art Foundation designed by Diller Scofidio + Renfro, on Grand Avenue in the heart of downtown Los Angeles. In 1991, the Broads endowed The Eli Broad College of Business and The Eli Broad Graduate School of Management at Michigan State University. They have supported a partnership between the MSU College of Education and Detroit Schools. Recognizing the power of art to inspire and uplift, the Broads gave $28 million to create the Eli and Edythe Broad Art Museum at MSU making possible an architecturally and artistically significant institution for the students and community of East Lansing and beyond.

Young Alumni Award

Mr. Henry Lee Ancheta Balanon

Henry Balanon is co-founder and vice president of Detroit Labs, a company that creates mobile apps for brands such as Chevy, Domino's, Quicken Loans and Stryker. Most recently Balanon and his team created the Chevy Game Time app, which was used by viewers during the Super Bowl to enhance their game watching experience. The app reached the Top 10 in the iTunes App Store and the Android Marketplace. Detroit Labs was funded by Detroit Venture Partners, a technology venture fund whose partners include Michigan State University alumni Dan Gilbert and Earvin Magic Johnson. Prior to co-founding Detroit Labs, Balanon founded Bickbot, another mobile app startup company and The Hungry Dudes, a popular website that celebrates Detroit food and that has been featured in the Detroit Free Press and the Washington Post. He has also broughtabout a huge culture shift in Southeast Michigan by founding Detroit Spartans, a metro Detroit alumni organization which has given the MSUAA a much wider alumni span. Balanon graduated from the College of Engineering at Michigan State University with a degree in computer science. He currently serves on the advisory board at the MSU Alumni Association and the Broad Executive Forum Board.

Mr. Daniel Kent Redford

Dan Redford grew up in Frankenmuth, Michigan, and graduated from Michigan State University with a B.A. in International Relations and Mandarin Chinese. He is fluent in Mandarin, studying in China at both Nankai University in Tianjin and Shanghai University. In 2010, he represented the United States as an ambassador to the Shanghai World Expo. During that time, he was internationally recognized for his journalistic work to promote the Expo's mission of 'Better City, Better Life,' along with strengthened Sino-American relations. He was published in the Detroit Free Press, Dome Magazine,the Huffington Post, the Shanghai Daily and the Jerusalem Post. Redford also served as a representative to the 2011 Saint PetersburgInternational Economic Forum. Redford is extremely passionate about building economic and cultural ties between the United States and China. In 2010, he worked with the Gillespie Group to create the 'U.S.-China Creative Space' to connect Chinese students at MSU to their surrounding community. Redford currently lives and works in Beijing, China. He is the director of China Operations for FirstPathway Partners, an industry leading EB5 investment firm. Always a proud Spartan, Redford is currently taking a leadership role in building an official MSU Alumni Club in Beijing, China